‘As a visual artist my instinctive response to something that interests me is to draw it, not to make a representation but to understand it through a ritual of repetitive mark-making. It is impossible to understand anything without obsessively, rigorously drawing it over and over again. This ritual obsession negates the need for a beginning or an end, its looking and making, work evolves from work’.
Maurice Quillinan’s work evolves from a search for memory, where he believes that everything we know is in a consistent struggle to become whole again as it was before the universe as we concieve it, began. He also draws figures and horses from old master reproductions and from life. He sees the figures and horses as landscapes in themselves or sculptures in an environment, such as his 2004 Self-Portrait. Quillinan believes we exist as memories, ethereal, multipartite, incomplete particles, constantly in a transitional longing to become whole again.
Maurice Quillinan grew up in Limerick, Ireland. He studied at the Limerick School of Art and Design (LSAD), the Royal College of Art, London (RCA), the Ecole Nationale Superieur des Beaux-Arts, Paris and the University of Limerick (UL). His measured tactile method of working manifests as semi abstracted interwoven narratives, explored through a wide variety of media, painting, drawing, print, collage, photography, sculpture and text. Central to his practice is a strong set of spiritual values which underlie his exploration of existence, incorporating the landscape, horses and the human figure as metaphors for the metaphysical challenges we encounter.
His love of music, especially operatic and choral compositions, operate as aide-memoirs, stimulating the emotional and psychological aspect of his practice. Poetry is another exploratory interest, especially the poetry of TS Eliot, WB Yeats, Hanshan (9th century Tang Dynasty poet) and the contemporary American poet Brian Turner.
He has been a recipient of many awards, including: Limerick City Vocational Educational Scholarships (VEC) awards, The Henry Moore Foundation Scholarship, a number of Arts Council awards, Culture Ireland awards, Limerick City and County Council awards and bursaries. He has represented Ireland in exhibitions in many countries, both in one person and group at home and internationally. His works are held in public and private collections in thirty-four countries.